The Father knows what you need before you ask Him. Matthew 6:8 (NIV)
The word, “Pray” is BIG, I know! It’s an action packed verb that requires faith, hope and an understanding that God-is in control. Let’s dig in but before we do, look at the verse above one more time. Does it make you wonder why we should pray? After all it says, ‘God already knows my/our needs without asking’. Hold on to that thought and let’s take a look at how the late Reverend Billy Graham addressed that question…
“If you are a parent, do you discourage your children from coming to you with their requests even if you already know what they want? No, of course not. You love them, and you take delight in listening to them. Even if you say no to their requests, it’s because you know better than they do what is best for them. God, our Heavenly Father, loves us and one of our greatest privileges is coming to Him in prayer. And because He already knows our needs, we can be confident His answer will be best. If He didn’t know our needs, why bother to pray? But He does, and this should give us confidence in prayer.”
I love that Reverend Graham included the words “delight”, “privilege” and “confidence” motivating our reasons for why we ‘bother’ to pray. I feel that confidence in my life now-but want to share with you there was a time when I had no idea how to pray. Not being brought up in the faith my head and heart were filled with pre-conceived notions that only those with proper credentials or titles, being a member of certain religions or experiencing religious rites of passage-deemed a person ‘good enough’ to speak to God.
Hear these words dear reader from one who has been there…you ARE pre-qualified, worthy, loved, treasured, chosen and invited to pray directly to The Lord!
Okay Nana so where do I start?
I’m so glad you asked! A good starting point is right where you are!
Talk to Jesus and let Him know your desire to be in relationship with Him! Pour your heart out, sing His praises, thank Him for simply waking up...you've got this! You might also want to pray the prayer that Jesus taught us called, “The Lord’s Prayer”. You’ll find Jesus’ how-to guideline in the New Testament-Book of Matthew-chapter 6, verses 9-14 in the back of your B-I-B-L-E.
(Old Sunday school teachers have a tendency to sing that one out!)
Did you know that when you pray The Lord's Prayer...
You pray ACKNOWLEDGEMENT when you address, “Our Father who art in Heaven,”
You practice REVERENCE when you pray, “Hallowed be Thy Name”.
You pray ANTICIPATION when you say, “Thy Kingdom come”,
You exercise SUBMISSION when you pray, “Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven”.
You present your requests by PETITION when you ask, “give us this day, our daily bread”.
You humble yourself before Him with CONFESSION when you ask, “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors”.
You ask for GUIDANCE when you pray, “And lead us not into temptation,”
You pray for PROTECTION when you say, “But deliver us from evil.”
Finally, you give Him PRAISE by concluding with; “For Thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen!
Dear Lord I..........(go ahead, He's waiting!)
I pray this blessed you today!
“Why Pray” from Hope for Each Day by Billy Graham. ©2002, 2012